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Monsters Inked

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Keywords: narrative writing, cross-grade, collaborative, digital storytelling, Web 2.0 tools, digital portfolios, Monsters, fantasy, storytelling, writing process, writing projects, publishing, collaboration, writing, wikis, paint program
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Reading, Writing, Podcasting, Early Learning, Technology, Social Skills, Art
Grades P-K through 6
School: Bedminster Twp Elem School, Bedminster, NJ
Planned By: Keith Schoch
Original Author: Keith Schoch, Bedminster
1) Second grade (or younger) students view a number of monster picture books with their teachers through shared reading experiences. (I Need My Monster by Amanda Noll is highly recommended).

2) The second graders then draw original monsters using crayons and colored pencils.

3) Sixth grade students pair up with second graders, and interview their younger buddies about the monsters. Using questions which they brainstormed earlier, the sixth graders draw out as many details as possible including story suggestions, and these are recorded on laptops using a free recording application such as Audacity (http://audacity.sourceforge.net/).

4) Back in the classroom, the sixth graders use a web-based illustration program such as Sumo Paint (www.sumopaint.com) to recreate their partner's monster, including a photo background to place the monster in the desired environment.

5) Sixth graders then create a monster story, based as much as possible on their second grader's responses recorded previously. This narrative is drafted in any text editing application (Microsoft Word, Google Docs). Sixth graders also scan or photograph their buddy's original drawing and save the image as a jpeg.

6) The completed story, along with the computer created image and the second grader's image, are uploaded by the sixth grader to a collaborative wiki environment (such as Wiki Spaces or PBWorks). Here, students can read and revise the work of their peers and leave comments as well.

7) Sixth graders share their stories with their younger buddies, and the two of them create a short read aloud experience which is videotaped for inclusion in the wiki. The performance attributes are left entirely up to the two students.

7) Second graders and their families are invited to visit the wiki to view the finished collaborations.
You are invited as well! See our Monsters Inked projects at http://monstersinked.pbworks.com. We have everything there but the video read alouds.
Links: Link to Sumo Paint (image editing)
Link to Monsters Inked
Link to PBWorks (wikis for education)
Link to Audacity (sound editing)
Materials: Video Tools, Art Tools, Batteries, Tripods, Flip Video, Mobile Labs